An Alternative Economics
  • 'An Alternative Economics', Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane, 2022. Photo: Joe Ruckli.

  • Five Mile Radius '444 Queen St' 2022. Photo Joe Ruckli.

  • Five Mile Radius '444 Queen St' 2022. Photo Joe Ruckli.

  • Shevaun Wright 'Teddy Bear Lien' 2022. Photo: Joe Ruckli.

  • Shevaun Wright 'Teddy Bear Lien' 2022. Photo: Joe Ruckli.

  • Gunybi Ganambarr 'Garrapara' 2019 and 'Fishtrap on the Gäṉgän River' 2019. Photo: Joe Ruckli.

  • Gunybi Ganambarr, 'Fishtrap on the Gäṉgän River', 2019, mixed media. Photo Joe Ruckli.

  • Katie Paterson 'Future Library: A Century Unfolds' 2019. Photo: Joe Ruckli.

  • Katie Paterson 'Future Library' 2014–114.

  • Keg de Souza 'Not a Drop to Drink' 2021. Photo: Joe Ruckli.

  • Keg de Souza 'Not a Drop to Drink' 2021. Photo: Joe Ruckli.

  • Make or Break 'Institutional Waste 2' 2022. Photo: Joe Ruckli.

  • Make or Break 'Institutional Waste 2' 2022. Photo: Joe Ruckli.

  • Make or Break 'Institutional Waste 2' 2022. Photo: Joe Ruckli.

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An Alternative Economics

07 May–09 July 202207 May–09 Jul 2022

#AnAlternativeEconomics

An Alternative Economics brings together Australian and overseas artists who explore the creation of value. Guided by the idea of the circular economy—as a compelling counternarrative to untenable eternal growth—they provoke us to reconsider what ‘counts’ in our society and why. Offering propositions for art making in a ‘post-growth’ world, they critique extractive systems, share cultural knowledge, promote the rights of nature, meditate on the role of art to promote change, decentre humans as arbiters of value, and highlight transforming relationships as the pathway to change. In big and small ways, the works in this show offer alternate models for a more sustainable, equal, and just future.

Artists

Five Mile Radius, Gunybi Ganambarr, Wanda Gillespie, Katie Paterson, Make or Break, Keg de Souza, and Shevaun Wright

Curated By
  • Tulleah Pearce
Artist Bios
Make or Break

Make or Break are an artist collective working on unceded Gadigal and Bidjigal lands. They devise process-based projects co-authored with the communities they are invited into. These have included creating experimental economies and temporary currencies, caring for civic spaces, celebrating the labour of strangers, prototyping future worlds, writing speculative fiction, and facilitating conversations as collective research.

Wanda Gillespie

Wanda Gillespie is driven by her belief in the spiritual potency of physical objects. Familiar objects are reimagined with alternate uses, history, culture, and ceremony. Gillespie has refined her craft as a wood sculptor through her evocative portrait sculptures, which combine ancient and contemporary forms, detailed and abstracted. She is based in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland, Aotearoa New Zealand.

Wanda Gillespie is driven by her belief in the spiritual potency of physical objects. Familiar objects are reimagined with alternate uses, history, culture, and ceremony. Gillespie has refined her craft as a wood sculptor through her evocative portrait sculptures, which combine ancient and contemporary forms, detailed and abstracted. She is based in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland, Aotearoa New Zealand.

Wanda Gillespie
Five Mile Radius

Founded in 2016, Five Mile Radius is a Brisbane-based collaborative design studio. Its architects, tradespeople, and educators are passionate about testing new ideas for Australia’s built future. They work with recycled and natural materials and are seen as a local leader in closed-loop thinking, waste reuse, and bioclimatic design. Their projects, products, and educational content imagine a world built on a respect for material resources. Funds generated through the Five Mile Shop are invested into research and education.

Gunybi Ganambarr

Gunybi Ganambarr is a Yolngu artist who lives at Gängän, near Yirrkala, in north-east Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory. He began by painting on bark and larrakitj, but extended his practice with an innovative use of reclaimed materials, including wood, rubber, glass, steel, galvanised iron, and aluminium. Under the tutelage of artists such as Gawirrin Gumana and Yumutjin Wunungmurra from his mother’s Dhaḻwaŋu clan, Ganambarr has attained ceremonial authority, shaping the content of his work.

Gunybi Ganambarr is a Yolngu artist who lives at Gängän, near Yirrkala, in north-east Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory. He began by painting on bark and larrakitj, but extended his practice with an innovative use of reclaimed materials, including wood, rubber, glass, steel, galvanised iron, and aluminium. Under the tutelage of artists such as Gawirrin Gumana and Yumutjin Wunungmurra from his mother’s Dhaḻwaŋu clan, Ganambarr has attained ceremonial authority, shaping the content of his work.

Gunybi Ganambarr
Katie Paterson

Scottish artist Katie Paterson collaborates with scientists and researchers around the world. She uses sophisticated technologies and specialist expertise to stage intimate, poetic, and philosophical engagements between people and their natural environment, considering our place on Earth in the context of geological time. Combining a romantic sensibility with conceptual rigour and coolly minimalist presentation, her works collapse the distance between the viewer and the distant edges of time and space. Paterson broadcasted the sounds of a melting glacier, mapped dead stars, compiled a slide archive of darkness from the depths of the universe, created a light bulb to simulate moonlight, and sent a recast meteorite back into space. Eliciting feelings of humility and wonder, melancholy and sublimity, her works are understated in gesture yet monumental in implication.

Keg de Souza

Keg de Souza is of Goan heritage and lives on unceded Gadigal land. She explores the politics of space through temporary architecture, radical pedagogy, and food politics. Her inquiry is influenced by her architectural training, her squatting and organising, and her personal experiences of colonialism—from her own ancestral lands being colonised to living as a settler on other people’s unceded lands.

Keg de Souza is of Goan heritage and lives on unceded Gadigal land. She explores the politics of space through temporary architecture, radical pedagogy, and food politics. Her inquiry is influenced by her architectural training, her squatting and organising, and her personal experiences of colonialism—from her own ancestral lands being colonised to living as a settler on other people’s unceded lands.

Keg de Souza
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The Institute of Modern Art acknowledges the traditional custodians of the land upon which the IMA now stands, the Jagera, Yuggera, Yugarapul, and Turrbal people. We offer our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as the first artists of this country. In the spirit of allyship, the IMA will continue to work with First Nations people to celebrate, support, and present their immense past, present, and future contribution to artistic practice and cultural expression.

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